Welcome, friends … to the LA-BOR-ATORY.
It’s just about that most wonderful time of the year in Connecticut high school football season and, perhaps, in the entire Connecticut sports year.
Thanksgiving Week — Can you believe it? — is just around the corner.
Not only does it mean family, friends, and loads of turkey and stuffing. It also means it’s time to figure out who’s in and who’s out of the state playoffs.
There is actually one weekend of games remaining, but with 14 playoff spots decided and a handful of others on the verge this week, it’s time to break out your slide rules, beakers and Bunsen Burners and dabble in some playoff formulas.
We actually broke it all down on this week’s GameTimeCT High School Football Podcast, with Kyle Brennan doing the honors of explaining everything. So if you want the AUDIO BOOK version, you’d best listen to the broadcast, above. If that doesn’t work, you can visit here. Or just subscribe to GameTimeCT podcasts on iTunes.
For the uninitiated, here’s how the CIAC’s state playoff formula works:
- Teams get 100 base points for a victory.
- Teams get 10 points for every defeated opponents’ victory (These are called ‘bonus points.’ When a team has beaten both teams of a Thanksgiving matchup, those 10 points are ‘guaranteed.’)
- Now, while all league wins equal 100 base points, non-league wins over schools from lower divisions are less: One class lower and you subtract 10 from the base 100 (or just add 90 base points). Two lower classes, subtract 20 (or just add 80), three lower classes subtract 30 (or just add 70).
- ALL schools from lower classes defeating higher classes get 10 points added for each higher class, regardless of whether it’s a league game or not: One class higher, add 10 (or just add 110 base points), two classes higher add 20 (or 120 base points), three classes higher add 30 (or 130 base points).
- NEW THIS YEAR: The SWC/SCC/ECC Connecticut Football Scheduling Alliance successfully petitioned the CIAC to remove the penalty for large schools beating out-of-league smaller schools. So, for example, Shelton beating Masuk is 100 points, not 90.
- The total points are divided by the number of games played to get your average.
- Top eight averages reach the state playoffs. Top four averages get home quarterfinal games.
Below we break down the essentials, first with a cheat sheet and then by team. The teams are listed according to their chances, with record and points accumulated so far.
Below each team is their maximum range with victories and minimum ranges for losses. This is important to see your team’s final point potential.
Finally, we give you the remaining games and the points for winning those games, and then the bonus points available. The team will earn 10 “bonus points” if each of those opponents listed win.
And, finally, we give you THE SKINNY which is what we think a team needs to climb up the ladder.
Now, these don’t delve too much into specifics, only a general overview. But if you think we’ve missed something, by all means, let us know.
The points are unofficial until the CIAC football committee meets the morning after Thanksgiving. The state quarterfinals begin Tuesday, Nov. 27.
Everybody got that? Here we go…
NOTE: This sheet has been updated to account for Wednesday’s games. Major changes to points are in red.
CHEAT SHEET — This class is actually pretty simple. Shelton, Darien, Southington, Newtown and Greenwich are in and playing for top seeding. Four spots remain. New Britain can clinch with a win over Berlin on Friday, Fairfield Prep will clinch this week with a New Britain loss or a win over West Haven. The rest need to win and get help.
As for the seeding, there’s a good chance five teams could finish unbeaten, meaning one would have to hit the road. The picture will be clearer by the weekend on those prospects.
*SHELTON (8-0), 1210 points
Max Range: 1530-1480
Min Range: 1270-1220
Remaining Games: vs. West Haven (LL – 150), vs. Derby (Non-league S – 110)
Bonus Point Games — 50: Notre Dame-WH (v Hamden), Cheshire (v Southington), Masuk (v Newtown), Fairfield Prep (v West Haven), Guilford (v Hand).
THE SKINNY — Shelton has already clinched a Class LL playoff berth. The Gaels will clinch a home quarterfinal with victories over West Haven and Derby. A (quite unlikely) loss to both and they’ll be looking at some help.
*DARIEN (9-0), 1280 points
Max Range: 1530-1460
Min Range: 1350-1290
Remaining Game(s): at New Canaan (LL – 170)
Bonus — 70: McMahon (v Norwalk), Warde (v Ludlowe), Ridgefield (v Danbury), Stamford (v Westhill), Staples (v Greenwich), Wilton (v Trinity), Bridgeport Central (v. Harding).
THE SKINNY — The three-time defending Class LL champion Blue Wave have already clinched a playoff berth. They’ll clinch a home quarterfinal with a victory over New Canaan. Failing that, they’ll need a bunch of the teams around them to lose.
*SOUTHINGTON (9-0), 1260 points
Max Range: 1450-1420
Min Range: 1320-1290
Remaining Game(s): v. Cheshire (LL – 130)
Bonus — 30: Glastonbury (v. Bloomfield), New Britain (v. Berlin), Simsbury (v. Avon)
THE SKINNY — The Blue Knights have already clinched a state playoff berth in Class LL. They can clinch a home quarterfinal with a victory over Cheshire and one of the following teams to lose: Shelton, Darien, Greenwich, Newtown.
*NEWTOWN (9-0), 1250 points
Max Range: 1460-1430
Min Range: 1310-1280
Remaining Game(s): v. Masuk (L – 150)
Bonus — 30: NFA (v. New London); Cheshire (v. Southington); Pomperaug (v. Notre Dame-Fairfield)
THE SKINNY — The Nighthawks have already clinched a playoff berth in Class LL. They can get a home quarterfinal by beating Masuk and getting one of the following teams to lose: Shelton, Darien, Greenwich, Southington.
*GREENWICH (9-0), 1240 points
Max Range: 1480-1420
Max Range: 1250-1190
Remaining Game(s): v. Staples (LL – 170)
Bonus — 60: Norwalk (v. McMahon), Trumbull (v St. Joseph), Ludlowe (v Warde), New Canaan (v Darien), Westhill (v Stamford); Trinity (v. Wilton).
THE SKINNY — The Cardinals will clinch a home quarterfinal with a victory over Staples and by getting one of the teams above it — Shelton, Darien, Southington or Newtown — to lose. Otherwise, it’ll be a musical chairs race for bonus games and Greenwich will need as many bonuses as possible to stay out of the No. 5 spot.
JUST WIN, BABY
FAIRFIELD PREP (8-1), 1140 points
Max Range: 1370-1300
Min Range: 1220-1150
Remaining Game(s): at West Haven (LL – 150 or 160 with WH win over Shelton)
Bonus — 70: North Haven (v. Amity); NFA (v. New London); Sheehan (v. Lyman Hall); Cheshire (v Southington); Sheehan (v East Haven); Harding (v Bridgeport Central). West Haven (Shelton) if Prep beats West Haven.
THE SKINNY — The Jesuits will clinch if New Britain loses to Berlin on Friday. Failing that, a win over West Haven will do the trick, OR, failing that, just one of either New Canaan, Staples to lose. They have a slight chance at a home quarterfinal by beating West Haven, but would need a bunch of teams around them to lose.
NEW BRITAIN (8-1), 1080 points
Max Range: 1320-1300
Min Range: 1130-1110
Remaining Game(s): at Berlin (M – 190)
Bonus — 20: Glastonbury (v. Bloomfield); Simsbury (v. Avon)
THE SKINNY — The Hurricanes have just about clinched. They will by beating Berlin on Friday night OR get New Canaan or Staples to lose. They have a mathematical shot at a home quarterfinal, but it’s unlikely.
A LITTLE HELP, HERE?
NEW CANAAN (7-2) 930 points
Max Range: 1180-1120
Min Range: 990-930
Remaining Game(s): vs. Darien (LL – 190)
Bonus — 60: Norwalk (v. McMahon); Trumbull (v. St. Joseph); Ludlowe (v. Warde); Danbury (v. Ridgefield); Westhill (v. Stamford); Trinity (v. Wilton).
THE SKINNY — First off, New Canaan needs to win the Turkey Bowl vs. Darien, or the Rams would likely miss out on the playoffs for the first time since 2004. A victory over Darien won’t quite clinch a playoff berth, though. They would need to win the Turkey Bowl and hope one of the following happens: that New Britain lost to Berlin this Friday (putting the Rams one bonus away from clinching if they beat Darien), or a Staples loss to Greenwich. A loss, and they’ll need a Christmas miracle to come through on Thanksgiving.
STAPLES (7-2), 920 points
Max Range: 1170-1120
Min Range: 980-930
Remaining Game(s): at Greenwich (LL – 190)
Bonus — 50: Warde (v Ludlowe); Ridgefield (v Danbury); Stamford (v Westhill); Wilton (v. Trinity); Bridgeport Central (v. Harding).
THE SKINNY — Like New Canaan, the Wreckers need some help. First, they need to beat Greenwich. Their best shot after that is New Canaan losing to Darien. Their second-best chance after that is if New Britain lost to Berlin the weekend before. We’ll know more after that game.
EAST HARTFORD (7-2), 900 points
Max Range: 1090-1060
Min Range: 950-920
Remaining Game(s): v. Manchester (LL – 140)
Bonus — 30: Newington (v Wethersfield); Glastonbury (v. Bloomfield); Simsbury (v Avon)
THE SKINNY — If the favorites in this class win on Thanksgiving — Darien over New Canaan and Greenwich over Staples — East Hartford would return to the state playoffs by beating Manchester. If one of those teams win, they’re going to be out.
WINNING LOTTO’S EASIER
WEST HAVEN (5-3), 620 points
Max Range: 1010-990
Remaining Game(s): at Shelton (LL – 180 or 190 w Shelton win v Derby); vs. Fairfield Prep (LL – 180)
Bonus — 20: Hillhouse (Wilbur Cross). Shelton (Derby, w win over Shelton)
THE SKINNY — West Haven’s pretty much toast unless the Westies can rise up and beat Shelton and Fairfield Prep back-to-back.
CHEAT SHEET — Another tidy class with Naugatuck and Hand having already clinched home quarterfinals and Maloney and Middletown earning playoff spots. They’re all playing for seeding now. Bunnell, Windsor, North Haven and Platt will clinch with wins. RHAM needs to win and one of those teams to lose. After that, it’s going to be tough.
**NAUGATUCK (9-0), 1250 points
Max Range: 1490-1480
Min Range: 1300-1290
Remaining Game(s): at Ansonia (S – 190)
Bonus — 10: Woodland (Seymour)
THE SKINNY — Naugatuck has clinched a state tournament berth for the second-consecutive year. A win over arch-rival Ansonia — which would be the first since they (or anybody else in the NVL) did it on Thanksgiving, 2010 — would give the Greyhounds the top seed. It would just take one bonus point to go against Hand and Middletown. Hand or Middletown are unlikely to catch them. But, again, Naugatuck has to beat Ansonia.
**HAND (9-0), 1250 points
Max Range: 1490-1420
Min Range: 1340-1270
Remaining Game(s): v. Guilford (L – 150 or 160 with win over Lyman Hall)
Bonus — 70: Hamden (v. Notre Dame-WH); West Haven (Shelton); Cheshire (Southington); New Fairfield (New Milord); West Haven (Fairfield Prep); Harding (v. Central)
THE SKINNY — Hand hasn’t lost to Guilford since Scott Benoit coached Guilford in 2006. A 12th-straight win over the Indians would very likely give Hand the No. 2 seed. Losses by Middletown and Naugatuck will deliver the top seed.
**MIDDLETOWN (9-0), 1240 points
Max Range: 1490-1430
Min Range: 1320-1260
Remaining Game(s): v. Windsor (L – 170).
Bonus — 60: Hartford Public (v Bulkeley); Farmington (v. Plainville); Platt (v. Maloney); Farmington (v. CREC); E.O. Smith (v. Tolland), New London (NFA).
THE SKINNY — Middletown has already clinched with two games remaining. It can actually get the top seed if they beat both New London (Wednesday night) and Windsor (Thanksgiving eve) and then get both Naugatuck and Hand to lose.
*MALONEY (8-1), 1090 points
Max Range: 1340-1270
Min Range: 1180-1100
Remaining Game(s): v. Platt (L – 170)
Bonus — 70: Hartford Public (Bulkeley); Farmington (Plainville); Windsor (Middletown); Farmington (CREC); E.O. Smith (Tolland); Bristol Eastern (Bristol Central); Conard (Hall).
THE SKINNY — The Spartans are in and a victory over Platt will get them the fourth home quarterfinal.
JUST WIN, BABY
BUNNELL (8-1), 1010
Max Range: 1180-1140
Min Range: 1070-1030
Remaining Game(s): v Stratford (M – 110)
Bonus — 40: Bethel (Brookfield); Ledyard (Fitch); Masuk (Newtown); Foran (Law)
THE SKINNY — A victory over 1-8 Stratford will clinch a playoff spot for Bunnell. They can still get in with a loss, but it isn’t advisable. They have a slight chance at getting a home quarterfinal.
WINDSOR (7-2), 980 points
Max Range: 1250-1170
Min Range: 1060-980
Remaining Game(s): at Middletown (L – 190)
Bonus — 80: Hartford Public (v Bulkeley); Farmington (v. Plainville); NFA (v. New London); Platt (v. Maloney); Farmington (v. CREC); E.O. Smith (v. Tolland); Bristol Central (v. Bristol Eastern); Hall (v. Conard).
THE SKINNY — The Warriors will be in with a victory over Middletown on Thanksgiving eve and will have a slight chance at earning a home quarterfinal. A loss, and Windsor will need help. But it’s doable, especially if Platt loses to Maloney, New London loses to Middletown and Guilford loses to Hand. An unlikely RHAM loss to Bacon Academy or maybe a Bunnell loss to Stratford would be a last resort.
NORTH HAVEN (7-2), 980 points
Max Range: 1210-1140
Min Range: 1050-980
Remaining Game(s): v. Amity (LL – 160)
Bonus — 70: Brookfield (v. Bethel); West Haven (v. Shelton); Cheshire (v. Southington); Masuk (v. Newtown); West Haven (v. Fairfield Prep); Foran (v. Law); Hillhouse (v. Wilbur Cross).
THE SKINNY — A victory over Amity will clinch a playoff spot for North Haven. The Indians haven’t lost to Amity in 10 years. If North Haven does lose, then the Indians will need a similar scenario as Windsor does with a loss: Guilford to lose, New London to lose and Platt to lose. Again, an unlikely RHAM loss to Bacon Academy and Bunnell loss to Stratford would be a last resort.
PLATT (7-2), 920 points
Max Range: 1160-1120
Min Range: 980-940
Remaining Game(s): at Maloney (L – 180)
Bonus — 40: Farmington (v. Plainville); Farmington (v. CREC); E.O. Smith (v. Tolland); Bridgeport Central (v. Harding)
THE SKINNY — Platt was given a new lease on its playoff hopes when Bristol Central forfeited its 21-20 win over the Panthers a few weeks ago. Now, Platt finds itself in a familiar scenario: Beat Maloney in the Stoddard Bowl for a playoff spot.
A LITTLE HELP, HERE?
RHAM (7-2), 900 points
Max Range: 1080-1030
Min Range: 960-910
Remaining Game(s): v. Bacon Academy (Non-league M – 120)
Bonus — 50: Bulkeley (v. Hartford Public); Plainville (v. Farmington); Rocky Hill (v. Cromwell/Portland); Tolland (v. EO Smith); Avon (v. Simsbury).
THE SKINNY — On the flip-side of Platt’s fortune is RHAM, which not only missed a huge window to clinch by losing to Bloomfield, 33-15, on Saturday. Adding insult to injury, the Sachems were stuck with the bill on Bristol Central’s forfeit and fell behind reinvigorated Platt in the playoff standings. Now, the Sachems need to beat Bacon Academy and hope some of the three teams around them lose, particularly Guilford, New London and Platt. If Platt wins, they’re in trouble. Win and root for Maloney, Sachems.
NEW LONDON (5-3), 680 points
Max Range: 1060-1040
Min Range: 720-700
Remaining Game(s): at Middletown (L – 180 or 190 with win over Windsor); vs. NFA (LL – 160).
Bonus — 20: Stonington (v. Westerly-RI). … Middletown (Windsor).
THE SKINNY — New London has its work cut out for it, with Middletown and NFA on tap. But since those teams carry lots of points, the Whalers’ have high point potential. Winning both would rocket them up the standings. They’ll need some extra bonus help, but Platt losing to Maloney and Windsor losing to Middletown will put New London an upset or two away from a playoff berth. Not ideal, but considering New London’s odd-ball season, it’s hope enough.
WINNING LOTTO’S EASIER
WETHERSFIELD (6-3), 780 points
Max Range: 970-930
Min Range: 830-790
Remaining Game(s): at Newington (L – 140)
Bonus — 40: Hartford Public (v. Bulkeley); Windsor (v. Middletown); E.O. Smith (v. Tolland); NWC (v. East Catholic)
THE SKINNY — Wethersfield’s prospects are pretty slim, all things considered. Among some of the things they need to happen is all of the teams around them to lose. We’ll know more as this week progresses.
GUILFORD (6-3), 770
Max Range: 1020-960
Remaining Game(s): at Hand (L – 190)
Bonus — 60: Notre Dame-Fairfield (v. Pomperaug); Foran (v. Law); Waterford (v East Lyme); East Haven (v. Branford); East Haven (Sheehan); Lyman Hall (v. Sheehan).
THE SKINNY — Guilford needs to beat both Lyman Hall and Hand, which it hasn’t done since 2006 and will be a heavy underdog, to even have any shot. In short: No way.
FITCH (6-3), 770 points
Max Range: 950-900
Remaining Game(s): v. Ledyard (M – 120)
Bonus — 50: Capital Prep (Killingly); East Lyme (Branford); Bacon Academy (RHAM): Harding (vs. Bridgeport Central); Wilbur Cross (vs. Hillhouse).
THE SKINNY — Fitch is mathematically alive, but …eh.
CHEAT SHEET — St. Joseph and Berlin have clinched home quarterfinals. Killingly has also clinched a playoff spot. Sheehan will clinch this week by beating East Haven or by beating Lyman Hall next week. East Haven will clinch by beating Sheehan this week or by beating Branford next week. Brookfield will clinch by beating Bethel next week. Cheney Tech will clinch by beating Thames River, which also has a chance to sneak in. If any of these scenarios fall apart, it’ll open the door for several lucky contestants…
**ST. JOSEPH (8-1), 1270 points
Max Range: 1520-1440
Min Range: 1350-1270
Remaining Game(s): v. Trumbull (LL – 170)
Bonus — 80: McMahon (v. Norwalk); Warde (v. Ludlowe); Ridgefield (v. Danbury); New Canaan (v. Darien); Stamford (v. Westhill); Staples (v. Greenwich); Wilton (v. Trinity Catholic); Bridgeport Central (v. Harding)
THE SKINNY — The Hogs have clinched a playoff spot and a home quarterfinal. They’ll get the top seed by beating Trumbull and getting a Berlin loss to New Britain. If Berlin wins as well, St. Joseph has upper hand if bonus points play out.
**BERLIN (9-0), 1270 points
Max Range: 1550-1480
Min Range: 1360-1280
Remaining Game(s): v. New Britain (LL – 200)
Bonus — 70: Bulkeley (Hartford Public); Plainville (Farmington); Rocky Hill (v. Cromwell/Portland); Bloomfield (v Glastonbury); Tolland (v. EO Smith); RHAM (v Bacon Academy); Avon (Simsbury).
THE SKINNY — Berlin has clinched a home quarterfinal, as well. The Redcoats will grab the No. 1 seed by beating New Britain and if St. Joseph loses. If St. Joseph wins, they’ll need bonus help to catch the Hogs.
*KILLINGLY (8-1), 1090 points
Max Range: 1280-1220
Min Range: 1160-1100
Remaining Game(s): at Capital Prep/AF (non-league S – 120)
Bonus — 60: NFA (v. New London); Ledyard (v. Fitch); Stonington (Westerly-RI); Bacon Academy (RHAM); Waterford (v. East Lyme); Trinity (v. Wilton).
THE SKINNY — Thanks to a 12-6 overtime win over NFA, Killingly will defend its Class M championship. They’ll get a home quarterfinal by beating Capital Prep/Achievement First on Friday.
JUST WIN, BABY!
SHEEHAN (7-1), 1000 points
Max Range: 1390-1320
Min Range: 1070-1000
Remaining Game(s): East Haven (M – 170); at Lyman Hall (M – 150)
Bonus — 70: Stratford (v. Bunnell); Branford (v. East Lyme); Barlow (v. Weston); Law (v. Foran); Griswold (v. Plainfield); Branford (v. East Haven — guaranteed with win over East Haven); Guilford (v. Hand)
THE SKINNY — Sheehan clinches a playoff berth and a home quarterfinal with a victory over East Haven this week. If not, then the Titans will clinch with a victory over Lyman Hall, but a top-four seed is out of the question. If Sheehan somehow loses both games, it’s going to be in trouble, especially if Branford wins out. But we’ll see how dire a loss to Lyman Hall would be after this week’s game.
EAST HAVEN (7-1), 900 points
Max Range: 1280-1220
Min Range: 960-900
Remaining Game(s): at Sheehan (M- 170); v. Branford (M – 150)
Bonus — 60: Bethel (v. Brookfield); Lyman Hall (v. Sheehan — Guaranteed with win over Sheehan); Coginchaug (v. North Branford); Notre Dame-Fairfield (v. Pomperaug); Wilbur Cross (v. Hillhouse). Branford (v. East Lyme, with win over Branford).
THE SKINNY — East Haven will earn the school’s first playoff berth if it somehow beats Sheehan this week. A Thames River win over Cheney Tech in that case would clinch a home quarterfinal for the Yellowjackets. If Sheehan beats East Haven — and remember, East Haven will be without top back Ryan Cordova this week due to a suspension — then it will come down to beating Branford in the Beehive Bowl on Thanksgiving.
BROOKFIELD (7-2), 970 points
Max Range: 1140-1090
Min Range: 1030-980
Remaining Game(s): v. Bethel (M – 110)
Bonus — 50: Stratford (v. Bunnell); New Fairfield (v. New Milford); Masuk (v. Newtown); Notre Dame-Fairfield (v. Pomperaug); Hillhouse (v. Wilbur Cross).
THE SKINNY — Brookfield will clinch a playoff spot by beating Bethel. We’ll know more about their seed chances after this weekend’s games.
CHENEY TECH (7-2), 930 points
Max Range: 1160-1130
Min Range: 1010-980
Remaining Game(s): v. Thames River (M – 150)
Bonus — 30: Prince Tech (v Bullard-Havens); MCW United (v. Quinebaug); Thames River (v Quinebaug — with win over Thames River).
THE SKINNY — Cheney Tech would have clinched already had it not lost to Bullard-Havens on a walk-off, interception return touchdown (oh, Cheney…). As it is, the Beavers can still clinch by defeating Thames River on Friday. They’d be doing this entire playoff race a favor, too. (See Thames River, below).
A LITTLE HELP, HERE?
WOLCOTT (6-3), 840 points
Max Range: 1040-1020
Min Range: 880-860
Remaining Game(s): at Holy Cross (S – 160)
Bonus — 20: Seymour (v. Woodland); WCA (v. Gilbert/NW).
THE SKINNY — Wolcott really did itself no favors by failing to satisfy their Superintendent’s ultimatum to account for the St. Paul locker room vandalism. As such, their forfeit to a beatable team in Sacred Heart/Kaynor Tech denies the Eagles a win-and-in scenario vs. Holy Cross. As of this week, Wolcott needs Branford to lose to either East Lyme (this week) or East Haven (Thanksgiving) AND have Thames River lose to Cheney Tech or Quinebaug. If both those scenarios happen, the Eagles would then just need to beat Holy Cross to get in.
WIN AND A PRAYER
ROCKVILLE (6-3), 830 points
Max Range: 990-960
Min Range: 880-850
Remaining Game(s): v. Ellington (M – 110)
Bonus — 30: Windsor Locks (v. Stafford); Windsor Locks (v. Lewis Mills); Gilbert/NW (v. WCA).
THE SKINNY — Rockville would have been in great shape had they held on to beat Valley Regional/Old Lyme. But the Rams still have a puncher’s chance to steal a spot. They need Sheehan to win its final two games (including v. East Haven), then get Thames River to lose to Cheney Tech or Quinebaug and Wolcott to lose to Holy Cross. If all of those things happen, Rockville should be able to outpoint the loser of Branford/East Haven and barely outpoint a victorious Law for the final spot. Rockville’s chances would improve considerably with one, perhaps, two of its bonus games coming through and they’d love it if Branford loses twice, thereby denying Law precious bonus points.
LAW (6-3), 830 points
Max Range: 1010-950
Min Range: 900-840
Remaining Game(s): at Foran (M – 110)
Bonus — 60: Stratford (v. Bunnell); Cheshire (v. Southington); Branford (v. East Lyme); Branford (v. East Haven); Guilford (v. Hand); Bassick (v. Barlow).
THE SKINNY — See Rockville’s scenario, above, except that the Lawmen will be rooting hard for Branford to win both of its games to hit the 970-point threshold with a win over Foran. That would put Law in position to at least tie or overtake Rockville if none of the Rams’ bonuses come in. It’s tough, but after last year’s miracle scenario came through for them, Law surely understands anything can happen.
BRANFORD (5-3), 700 points
Max Range: 1080-1010
Min Range: 770-700
Remaining Game(s): v. East Lyme (L – 140 or 150 w win over Waterford); at East Haven (M – 170 or 180 w win over Sheehan)
Bonus — 70: Amity (v. North Haven); Lyman Hall (v. Sheehan); North Branford (v. Coginchaug); Stonington (v. Westerly-RI); Pomperaug (v. Notre Dame-Fairfield). East Lyme (v. Waterford — w win over East Lyme); East Haven (v. Sheehan w win over East Haven).
THE SKINNY — Branford is far down the standings, but with two games remaining, has a better shot than most of the teams around it. The Hornets will do themselves a huge favor by winning their final two games — the last of which is East Haven. Their best bet after that is getting one of the teams around them to lose. As of this week, that means a loss by Wolcott to Holy Cross, a Cheney loss to Thames River, or any Thames River loss. We’ll know more later.
ATI (5-3), 670 points
Max Range: 990-950
Min Range: 730-690
Remaining Game(s): vs. O’Brien Tech (S – 160); v. MCW United (M – 100)
Bonus — 40: Prince Tech (v. Bullard-Havens); Platt Tech (v. O’Brien Tech); Quinebaug (v. Thames River); Quinebaug (v. MCW United).
THE SKINNY — ATI stunned everybody when it lost to Thames River last week, and threw this Class into even more disarray. With two games remaining, the Wolverines are not out of it just yet, but they need to beat both O’Brien Tech (this week) and MCW United to get into position and pray for help, especially Quinebuag beating Thames River (which would give them needed bonus points and also knock Thames out). They’re going to need Branford and Wolcott to lose, too. Again, we’ll have a better idea on this later.
THAMES RIVER (5-3), 640 points
Max Range: 1030-980
Min Range: 710-660
Remaining Game(s): at Cheney Tech (M – 170); at Quinebaug (L – 150).
Bonus — 50: ATI (v. O’Brien Tech); Prine Tech (v. Bullard-Havens); Platt Tech (v. O’Brien Tech); Vinal Tech (v. Wilcox Tech); MCW United (v. Quinebaug — guaranteed wi win over Quinebaug).
THE SKINNY — With its victory over ATI, Thames River has actually put itself into great position to leap over everybody for a playoff spot. They have two games remaining, both with high point potential. Wins over both, beginning with Cheney Tech this week, would vault the Crusaders over Cheney, Law, Rockville and the loser of the Branford/East Haven game. They’d just clinch if Wolcott lost to Holy Cross or if Branford loses to East Haven.
WINNING LOTTO’S EASIER
WESTON (6-3), 750 points
Max Range: 970-900
Min Range: 820-750
Remaining Game(s): v. Barlow (M – 150)
Bonus — 70: Bethel (v. Brookfield); Stratford (v. Bunnell); New Milford (v. New Fairfield); East Lyme (v. Branford); Notre Dame-Fairfield (v. Pomperaug); Law (v. Foran); East Lyme (v. Waterford).
THE SKINNY — Weston would need to beat Barlow and get everybody to collapse above them.
LYMAN HALL (5-3), 580 points ELIMINATED
Max Range: 980-910
Min Range: 650-580
Remaining Game(s): v. Sheehan (M – 170 or 180 w win over East Haven).
Bonus — 70: Ledyard (v. Fitch); Montville (v. Windham); CREC (v. Farmington); Foran (v. Law); Bassick (v. Barlow); Sheehan (v. East Haven w win over Sheehan); Guilford (v. Hand, wi win over Guilford).
THE SKINNY — Lyman Hall was eliminated with its loss to Guilford.
CHEAT SHEET — Ansonia and Bullard-Havens have both clinched home quarterfinals and are vying for the top seed. Stafford/Somers/East Windsor has also clinched and a win over Windsor Locks would secure a home quarterfinal game. Cromwell/Portland is in with a win over Rocky Hill, Bloomfield is in with a win over Glastonbury, Woodland is in with a win over Seymour. The winner of Tuesday’s Haddam-Killingworth vs. Valley Regional/Old Lyme game is in, the loser is out. Plainfield is in with a win over Griswold.
Everybody else needs to hope some of the above don’t happen.
Note: We’ve added the averages for each team since Valley Regional/Old Lyme only plays nine games.
**ANSONIA (9-0), 1350 points
Max Range: 1630 (163.0)-1580 (158.0)
Min Range: 1420 (142.0)-1370 (137.0)
Remaining Game(s): vs. Naugatuck (L – 210)
Bonus — 50: Watertown (v. Torrington); Kennedy (v. Crosby); Derby (v. Shelton); Holy Cross (v. Wolcott); WCA (v. Gilbert/NW)
THE SKINNY — The Chargers have qualified for the state playoffs for the 13th-consecutive season and have earned a home quarterfinal. They can get the No. 1 overall seed with a victory over Naugatuck.
**BULLARD-HAVENS (9-0), 1340 points
Max Range: 1560 (156.0)
Min Range: 1420 (142.0)
Remaining Game(s): at Prince (S – 140)
Bonus — None.
THE SKINNY — Bullard-Havens has clinched its third-straight state playoff berth and a home quarterfinal game. The Tigers can get the top seed with a win over Prince Tech, an Ansonia loss and for Stafford/Somers/East Windsor to be denied one bonus game.
*STAFFORD CO-OP (9-0), 1260 points
Max Range: 1480 (148.0)-1440 (144.0)
Min Range: 1320 (132.0)-1290 (129.0)
Remaining Game(s): vs. Windsor Locks (M – 150 or 160 w win over Lewis Mills)
Bonus — 40: Morgan (v. OSW); North Branford (vs. Coginchaug); Gilbert/NW (v. WCA); Windsor Locks (v. Lewis Mills — w win over Windsor Locks)
THE SKINNY — The Bulldogs are back in the state playoffs for the third-straight season. They can clinch a home quarterfinal with a win over Windsor Locks. A loss, and they can still get a home quarterfinal if Bloomfield, Woodland or Cromwell/Portland lose.
JUST WIN, BABY!
CROMWELL/PORTLAND (8-1), 1150 points
Max Range: 1320 (133.0)-1290 (129.0)
Min Range: 1200 (121.0)-1170 (117.0)
Remaining Game(s): vs. Rocky Hill (S – 120)
Bonus — 30: Morgan (OSW); Rockville (v. Ellington); Lewis Mills (v. Windsor Locks).
THE SKINNY — The Panthers will clinch a playoff spot by beating Rocky Hill OR if Plainfield loses to Griswold, if O’Brien Tech loses one of its final two games, or if Woodland loses to Seymour. They can also outpoint Bloomfield if the Warhawks lose to Glastonbury and enough bonuses go their way. To get a home quarterfinal game, Cromwell/Portland would need two of the teams around them to lose — H-K (to Valley Regional), Woodland (to Seymour), Bloomfield (to Glastonbury), Stafford (to Windsor Locks).
BLOOMFIELD (8-1), 1130 points
Max Range: 1380 (138.0)-1320 (132.0)
Min Range: 1200 (120.0)-1140 (114.0)
Remaining Game(s): at Glastonbury (LL – 180)
Bonus — 60: Bulkeley (v. Hartford Public); Plainville (v. Farmington); Rocky Hill (v. Cromwell/Portland); Tolland (v. E.O. Smith); RHAM (v. Bacon Academy); Avon (v. Simsbury)
THE SKINNY — The Warhawks will clinch a playoff berth by defeating Glastonbury this week OR if any of Cromwell/Portland, Woodland, Plainfield, or O’Brien Tech lose. They can get a home quarterfinal with a win over Glastonbury and if two of Stafford, Cromwell/Portland and Woodland lose.
WOODLAND (8-1), 1120 points
Max Range: 1340 (134.0)-1300 (130.0)
Min Range: 1180 (118.0)-1140 (114.0)
Remaining Game(s): vs. Seymour (S – 160)
Bonus — 40: Torrington (Watertown); Wolcott (Holy Cross); Derby (Shelton); Crosby (Kennedy)
THE SKINNY — The Hawks are close to a playoff spot. A victory over Seymour will do it, and if three of four teams around them lose, they can get a home quarterfinal. Woodland can also get in with a Plainfield loss or an O’Brien Tech loss. A Bloomfield loss and tons of bonus help would also do the trick. Just beat Seymour, guys.
HADDAM-KILLINGWORTH (8-1), 1070 points
Max Range: 1310 (131.0)-1300 (130.0)
Min Range: 1120 (112.0)-1100 (110.0)
Remaining Game(s): at Valley Regional/OL (S – 170)
Bonus — 10: Lewis Mills (vs. Windsor Locks)
THE SKINNY — Haddam-Killingworth’s Tuesday game vs. Valley Regional/Old Lyme is a virtual playoff game. The winner is in, the loser is out. Simple.
PLAINFIELD (8-1), 1060 points
Max Range: 1260 (126.0)-1230 (123.0)
Min Range: 1110 (111.0)-1080 (108.0)
Remaining Game(s): v. Griswold (S – 150)
Bonus — 30: CREC (v. Farmington); Stonington (v. Westerly-RI); Bacon Academy (v. RHAM).
THE SKINNY — Plainfield will clinch a playoff spot by beating Griswold. A loss and they’re finished.
VALLEY REGIONAL/OL (7-1), 940 points
Max Range: 1160 (128.89)-1150 (127.78)
Min Range: 980 (108.89)-970 (107.78)
Remaining Game(s): vs. Haddam-Killingworth (S – 180)
Bonus — 10: Lewis Mills (Windsor Locks).
THE SKINNY — See: Haddam-Killingworth. Win and in. Lose, out.
A LITTLE HELP, HERE?
O’BRIEN TECH (6-2), 850 points
Max Range: 1210 (121.0)-1170 (117.0)
Min Range: 920 (92.0)-880 (88.0)
Remaining Game(s): at ATI (M – 160); at Platt Tech (L – 130)
Bonus — 40: Vinal (v. Platt Tech – guaranteed w win over Platt Tech); Thames River (v. Cheney Tech); Prince Tech (v. Bullard-Havens); MCW United (vs. ATI – guaranteed w win over ATI)
THE SKINNY — The Condors, darlings of last year’s Class S playoff race, have two games left — vs. ATI and Platt Tech –and needs to win both to have a chance. If O’Brien wins both, they’ll need one of the following: Woodland to lose, Plainfield to lose, Cromwell/Portland to lose and two bonus points, or Bloomfield to lose and two bonus points. This will be cleared up shortly.
SEYMOUR (6-3), 870 points
Max Range: 1100 (110.0)-1060 (106.0)
Min Range: 920 (92.0)-880 (88.0)
Remaining Game(s): v. Woodland (S – 180)
Bonus — 40: Watertown (v. Torrington); Kennedy (v. Crosby); Derby (v. Shelton); Holy Cross (v. Wolcott).
THE SKINNY — Seymour needs to beat Woodland and then get help. And it’s going to be tough. First, Plainfield must lose to Griswold. THEN, O’Brien Tech needs to lose at least once, preferably to ATI. Again, the Cats will have a better understanding of their prospects after O’Brien Tech plays ATI on Saturday. But they’re rooting for ATI.